We the Women: Julie Suk with Kirsten Swinth

Tue. Sep 15, 2020 8:00pm - 9:00pm EDT
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Suk introduces us to the bold women who breathed life into the Equal Rights Amendment, and how the long, complicated history of the amendment has left its future hanging in the balance. 

Evil Geniuses Book Cover

The Equal Rights Amendment was first introduced in Congress in 1923. It wasn't until 1972 that it was adopted, and not until earlier this year that the needed three-quarters of the states approved it. Nearly 100 years after its proposal—and nearly 40 years after the deadline for state approval passed—what is the future of the ERA? The law would promise that "equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex," and could finally bring a real fight to such problems as pay inequity, domestic violence, sexual harassment, and discrimination against pregnant women and mothers. But does it have a chance to become part of our Constitution?

In her new book, We the Women: The Unstoppable Mothers of the Equal Rights Amendment, leading legal scholar Julie Suk introduces the bold women lawmakers who created the ERA and charts the winding path it has traveled since. Through her examination of its past, she provides a guide to its future.

Also, check out the Library's latest book list, Essential Reads on Feminism, released last month to mark the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. It offers a broad selection of titles relating to women's activism, from personal memoirs to sweeping histories, encompassing a spectrum of voices, past and present.

LIVE from NYPL is made possible by the support of Library patrons and friends, as well as by the continuing generoisty of Celeste Bartos, Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos and Adam Bartos, and the Margaret and Herman Sokol Public Education Endowment Fund.

Julie Suk
is a frequent commentator in the media on legal issues affecting women, including The New York Times and CBS News. The House Judiciary Committee cited Suk's article, "An Equal Rights Amendment for the Twenty-First Century: Bringing Global Constitutionalism Home" in its leading to the House's historic vote in 2020 to remove the ERA ratification deadline. Suk is a professor of sociology, political science, and liberal studies at The Graduate Center of the City Unviersity of New York (CUNY), where she also serves as the academic dean overseeing the Graduate Center's interdisciplinary master's programs. She is also a Visiting Professor at Yale Law School. She has a J.D. from Yale Law School, where she studied on the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans and a D. Phil in Politics from Oxford University, where she held a Marshall Scholarship.

If you have a NYPL library card—or live in New York state and want to apply for one now—you can borrow We the Women: The Unstoppable Mothers of the Equal Rights Amendment for free with our e-reader app SimplyE, available for iOS and Android devices.

Readers everywhere who wish to purchase copies of We the Women: The Unstoppable Mothers of the Equal Rights Amendment can do so at The New York Public Library Shop. All proceeds benefit the New York Public Library. Plus, receive a 125th Anniversary tote bag with your purchase! 

This program will be streamed on Zoom. You must register with your email address in order to receive the link to participate. Please check your email shortly before the discussion to receive the link. Captions for this event will be provided. 

Please send all press inquiries (photo, video, interviews, audio-recording, etc.) at least 24-hours before the day of the program to Sara Beth Joren at sarabethjoren@nypl.org.

For all other questions and inquiries, please contact publicprograms@nypl.org.

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